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"Who is Satan? What does he do? What does the Bible say about him?" My quick thoughts.

What is “the Devil”? Where did he come from? Can demons possess Christians? I get asked these questions often. In my experience, people are usually squarely located on either the side of “I don’t believe in Satan/I don’t ever think about it” to the other side of “I pray against Satan and his demons all the time.” It reminds me of what C.S. Lewis said in The Screwtape Letters: “There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them.”

Did God use "stuff" in creation? How should I read Heb. 11:3? My response

David,
In one of your classes I thought I understand you to say that God created the heavens and the earth by putting order to chaos.The Webster dictionary defines chaos as "a confused mass or mixture", which to me means there was something of substance.Therefore, God put order to something that was already in existence.
However, this morning I read: Hebrews 11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
This scripturestates God did not create the universe out of what was visible (matter/chaos) .
Fully understanding that our human brains do not comprehend nor understand many of the capabilities of God and won't until we meet Him, how do you reconcile this?
Friend

Hi,
Great question!
My own view is that ancient people in general, which would include the Hebrews, considered the act of creating quite differently than we do. John Walton does an excellent job of articulating these distinctions i…

The Audiences of Jesus

When you read the Gospels carefully, you discover some great insights concerning the audience to whom Jesus speaks. There are four types of audiences addressed in Jesus’s ministry: (a) His opponents, (b) the crowds, (c) the disciples, (d) the Apostles. I want to briefly explore the final three audiences and reflect on why this matters.
“The Apostles” Jesus’s very first disciples were “taken” from John the Baptizer’s group of disciples; Andrew (and probably John), then Andrew recruited his brother, Simon Peter. Soon after, Jesus called someone else from the same hometown as Andrew: Philip, who then brought his brother, Nathaniel (John 1:35-48). We see in these, and with others, Jesus used a network of relationships that already existed (e.g., brothers: Andrew and Simon Peter, John and James), business partners (Peter and Andrew fished together with James and John, Lk 5:10), while the others almost certainly would have known each other because they lived in the same towns (Capernaum and …